Crisp Regional awarded $1M to cover loss of revenue

Crisp Regional awarded $1M to cover loss of revenue
Published: Aug. 11, 2022 at 5:21 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 11, 2022 at 6:26 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CORDELE, Ga. (WALB) -The US Department of Agriculture is awarding $4.5 million to rural Georgia healthcare. A portion is going to Crisp Regional Hospital to help cover a loss of revenue after the COVID-19 pandemic.

One million dollars are going to Crisp Regional. The money will be used to cover expenses that are continuing to rise.

The hospital president and CEO Steven Gautney said among many other procedures, surgeries, visits to the ER, and physicians’ offices are typically how they make revenue. COVID-19 stopped that.

Steven Gautney is the President and CEO of Crisp Regional Hospital.
Steven Gautney is the President and CEO of Crisp Regional Hospital.(WALB)

“There were weeks or months where surgery and other outpatient services were closed, and we saw a dramatic decline in people coming because the world was literally about shut down,” said Gautney.

Vacancies in the hospital are also driving up costs by paying people more to fill a position.

“We’ve seen labor costs and supply costs, just like much of the rest of America, we’ve seen those costs go up following the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Gautney.

The US Department of Agriculture is awarding 4.5 million dollars to rural georgia healthcare.
The US Department of Agriculture is awarding 4.5 million dollars to rural georgia healthcare.(WALB)

Gautney said now he believes inflation may be affecting visits.

“People are experiencing high costs the groceries, medicines, and fuel so I think all those things impact people in their willingness to come to the doctor,” said Gautney.

For that reason, the USDA is using this money to help hospitals cover those losses to continue giving care. Xochitl Torres Small is the USDA Under Secretary For Rural Development.

Xochitl Torres Small is the USDA Under Secretary For Rural Development.
Xochitl Torres Small is the USDA Under Secretary For Rural Development.(WALB)

“We recognize that in the midst of COVID there were real losses hospitals dug deep to find a way to make it work, and that makes it difficult to stay sustainable into the future,” said Small.

Rep. Sanford Bishop said he wants health care to be easily accessible.

Rep. Sanford Bishop represents the 2nd District.
Rep. Sanford Bishop represents the 2nd District.(WALB)

“My passion is to make sure that it will not matter the ZIP code of which youngster, a family, a small business is located they have access to resources,” said Bishop.

Since Crisp Regional serves several counties nearly 70,000 people depend on it.

Not only is Crisp Regional vital for health care, but also the economy.

They generate around $200 million each year and they are one of the county’s largest employers employing around 800 people. Gautney said this money helps them continue their mission.

Copyright 2022 WALB. All rights reserved.